When you take a look around Melbourne, it’s not difficult to understand why it has been long touted as the “most European capital city of Australia”. Remnants of colonial architecture linger down tree-lined streets, trams ramble along with a ding-ding and cobblestone laneways shelter coveted bars and dining spots. Add on the temperamental weather and thriving arts scene and well sure, it’s pretty darn attractive.
But if you still need us to twist your arm, then let’s throw in some exceptional coffee too. Undoubtedly home to some of Australia’s crème de la crème of coffee roasting, Melbourne coffee culture is world renowned. We had a jolly good time compiling this guide, traipsing around Bevan’s old stomping grounds and to some of the best cafes in Melbourne CBD. Don’t let all the brunch options and design elements woo you (although they’ll certainly reel you in) – you’re here for the coffee first – so let us tell you about the cafes serving the best coffee in Melbourne.
the best coffee shops in Melbourne
Best Coffee In Melbourne CBD
Brother Baba Budan
Seven Seeds Coffee Roasters
Nestled in the university district, the namesake cafe is the largest of the Seven Seeds trio of cafes in Melbourne CBD. Here, you’ll find a team of baristas and wait staff managing the 100-seater cafe and whipping up your coffee of choice with seasonal single origins and blends. Their signature espresso blends offer sweet caramel or bold chocolate notes so coffee lovers are unlikely to be dissatisfied.
Born in 2007, Seven Seeds’ practices remain rooted in sustainable principles, this ethos further demonstrated in 2018 when the Company took “The Pledge”, a common code for transparency reporting in green coffee buying. Those signatories who take The Pledge agree to publish purchase price information amongst other things of the coffee which they are selling, and are true companies dedicated to sustainable coffee practices.
Such is the success of Seven Seeds that their coffee beans are stocked by a number of cafes in Melbourne, several establishments in Australia’s eastern states and even across the ocean in cities such as Hong Kong and Los Angeles. Keep an eye out for the undulating seven lines logo!
Industry Beans was founded in 2010 by brothers Steven and Trevor Simmons, the pair having carved a reputation as one of the leaders of third-wave coffee in Melbourne. Almost 10 years later, Industry Beans continues to bring the ultimate coffee experience to communities and have successfully established branches in Sydney and Brisbane.
Slick white and birch interiors greet you at the Little Collins Street Modbar along with cheerful, knowledgeable baristas decked out in white tees and grey aprons. Coffee lovers can rely on their favourite espresso blends whilst the more coffee-learned can take their curious taste buds on an adventure with Industry Beans’ expertly made batch brew, Fitzroy Iced or Bubble Cup. Creators of the one and only Coffee Bubble Cup, this iced drink combines cold brew coffee with coffee-soaked tapioca pearls, reminiscent of Asian bubble-tea drinks. The Bubble Cup does come in Vegan Original or Salted Caramel flavours too. For the full coffee and brunch in-house experience, make your way to the original flagship, which locals will argue serves the best coffee in Fitzroy.
Patricia Coffee Brewers
best coffee Melbourne northside
Proud Mary Coffee Roasters
Another pioneer in the specialty coffee industry in Melbourne, Proud Mary owner, Nolan Hirte, has certainly garnered a loyal following 10+ years of experience. The Collingwood cafe is pumping when we visit on a Saturday morning with baristas smashing out coffee requests in azure blue cups and saucers, and wait staff deftly delivering brunch plates.
Proud Mary roasts single origin beans from almost every Central American country. These beans sit available for sale alongside the popular house blends; Angel Wings, Ghost Rider and Humbler, of which we see several bags walk out the door with repeat customers during our brief breakfast stop.
We order a strong latte and long macchiato alongside the espresso french toast to share. Whilst we feel that our breakfast was on the small side given the price, we cannot fault the coffee and service. Smooth buttery and caramel flavours without terrible bitterness (a sign of a good barista particularly when ordering a long macc!), this roaster’s coffee receives our tick of approval.
“Simple, yet significant and always intentional”
Design enthusiasts will be begging for a seat as well as a cup of coffee at this elegant cafe in Melbourne’s northern suburb of Ascot Vale. Designed by Melbourne-based creative studio, Biasol, the interior is reminiscent of the delicatessens which flourished in the city back in the 1950s. But we should tell you about the coffee too!
No.19 uses coffee beans from Australian coffee roasting sensation, Five Senses. A regular supplier for Brisbane cafes too, this choice doesn’t worry us, with our flat white and long macchiato arriving swiftly at our bar seats and providing a satisfying start to our day of coffee adventuring.
If you’re looking to linger, a well-brewed cup of coffee can accompany a plate of pretty brunch fare should you manage to nab a seat on one of the plush, teal bench seats underneath the bulbous brass lamps.
Code Black Coffee Roasters
“Where there are questions, there is illusion. Where there is illusion, there is pleasure.”
Wander into the depths of a Code Black Coffee cafe and you’ll be wandering down a dark path – but there’s a light at the end, we guarantee it. Since 2012, Code Black Coffee Roasters have been obsessed with the dark art and science of coffee. Code Black do not hide the fact that they strive to be the Best, with the roasters boasting an impressive number of espresso and filter blends for sale on their shelves.
Vegetarian, vegan and coeliac diners will adore the Code Black food menu and all hours cocktails are on offer if you consider the caffeine not strong enough. Single origin, batch brew and filter options change daily and we certainly consider the extra $1 for ice cream in the affogato is money well-spent. Sister branches located in North Melbourne, CBD and Docklands.